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Saved from the Titanic

Saved from the Titanic[1] is a 1912 American silent motion picture short starring Dorothy Gibson, an American film actress who survived the sinking of the RMS Titanic on April 15, 1912. She had been one of around 28 people aboard the first lifeboat to be launched from Titanic and was rescued about five and a half hours later after leaving the ship. On returning to New York, she co-wrote the script and played a fictional version of herself.

The plot involves her recounting the story of the disaster to her fictional parents and fiance, with the footage interspersed by stock footage of icebergs, Titanic's sister ship Olympic and the ship's captain Edward Smith. Most of the film is black-and-white, although two scenes were in kinemacolor.

To add to the film's authenticity, Gibson wore the same clothes as on the night of the disaster and her rescue. The filming took place in a New Jersey studio and aboard a derelict ship in New York harbor, and took just 2 weeks. It was the first film to be made about the disaster and premiered in the United States just 29 days after the ship sank.

Cast

Reception and legacy

The film was released internationally and attracted large audiences and positive reviews, though some criticized it for commercializing the tragedy soon after the event. It is now regarded as a lost film, as the last known prints were destroyed in a studio fire in March 1914. A few printed stills are now all that is known to survive of it. It is also the last film that Dorothy Gibson ever made, as she suffered a mental breakdown after completing it, apparently due to the mental strain that it caused her.

Stills

  1. known in the UK as A Survivor of the Titanic